BAYONNE, N.J. -- The Coast Guard says the intense winter storm that battered a cruise ship and shortened its voyage also damaged part of the ship's propulsion system.
Coast Guard spokesman Charles Rowe says the Anthem of the Seas' left azipod was rendered inoperable during the storm, which packed hurricane-force winds and wave heights of 30 feet. An azipod is a propeller that's mounted to a steerable pod that contains an electric motor.
Rowe says the Coast Guard was told about the problem before the 1,141-foot ship returned early to its homeport of Bayonne on Wednesday night with 4,500 passengers and 1,600 crew members.
The Coast Guard says the ship sustained largely cosmetic damage, including broken glass, china and balcony doors.
Rowe says the ship can safely maneuver with a single azipod.